Chicken production in the US, when viewed in totality, is a viable, mutually beneficial and attractive farming enterprise for the vast majority of the farm families who raise chickens in partnership with the companies they work with.
That’s the conclusion drawn from a new US industry survey carried out on behalf of the National Chicken Council (NCC) which also found that “live chicken production is broadly and generally being run by a group of effective and experienced farmers”.
“Chicken farmers generally have higher incomes compared to all farms and all US households,” it is stated in the report, which is titled Live Chicken Production Trends.
Chicken farmers were also found to have an age structure that is similar to all farm operators, although when compared to the entire US labour force, both chicken farmers and all farm operators tend to be older than non-farm employees.
“This is seen as a result of the substantial financial investment often required to enter farming,” stated the report.
Commenting on the fact that the turnover rate of chicken farmers was 6.4% (2014 figure), the report stated that the majority of those who left the industry did so on a voluntary basis, or due to external factors beyond the control of the companies and farmers involved.
Responding companies to the survey also reported, however, that they had “significant waiting lists” from those who would like to either enter live chicken production for the first or expand their existing operations.